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Nick Schäferhoff
Editor in Chief
First published: February, 2014
Last updated
: October, 2020 by Nick Schäferhoff (14th revision)

In 2020, anyone can build and design a website without knowing anything about web development, design, or coding.

However, there are so many different ways to set up a website. You can code it, you can use website builders etc. But how people really build websites nowadays?

Whether you want to create a website for yourself or for your business, you can easily do that by using the right tools and resources.

This step-by-step guide will help you create a website from scratch without having to spend money for freelancers, agencies, or website builders.

All you need is 1-2 hours of your free time to complete the guide and set up a website.

Table of Contents: 9 Steps to Create a Website

With this guide you can build a small business website, blog or an online store website:

  1. Choose and Register a Domain Name (jump to step #1)
  2. Sign up with Web Hosting Service
  3. Install WordPress (through web host)
  4. Choose a Theme and Customize Your Website
  5. Add Important Pages
  6. Add a Blog
  7. Add an Online Store
  8. Test Your Website
  9. Launch Your Website

If you have any specific questions about the steps listed in this guide, I’ll offer free help through this contact page (we love helping beginners).

Last, but not least, if you built a website, feel free to show it to us. Happy to give feedback.

Ready? Let’s get started!

Step 0: Most Commonly Asked Questions


Since this guide has been online since 2014, I’ve received hundreds of questions from this site visitors.

However, I’ve also received questions that have all helped me to improve this tutorial. I’ll list down most common ones here so you can have a better idea of what to expect.

1. How much does it cost to build a website using this guide?

You’ll need a domain name ($10/year) and web hosting ($5-$10/mo). That’s all. No need to use website builders, expensive web design tools or spend money on web developers.

2. Is this guide accurate updated frequently?

Yes. We revise this content 3-4x times a year to make sure all the steps, screenshots and links are working and accurate.

3. How long will it take to have my website online?

If you are a complete beginner, it might take you 2-3 hours. If you are more experienced, you can set up a website in 30 minutes or so.

4. Should I create a blog or a website?

You can have or do both. You can find main differences here: Blog vs. Website

5. Can I make money from my blog or a website?

There are many different ways to monetize your website. I’ve compiled a list of 30 most popular ways of monetizing your websites.

6. How can I get visitors to my website?

You can see list of 50+ ways to increase your website traffic. Most of the strategies mentioned can be implemented without spending any money.

7. Can I also make a blog and/or ecommerce site following this tutorial?

Yes. This guide covers both blog, online store as well as small business website creation.

Full disclosure: Some of the outgoing links in this guide are affiliate links. This means that if you decide to purchase a service recommended by me, I earn a commission at no additional cost to you. This is how we keep WebsiteSetup updated and be able to offer free help via email. Thanks for your support :-).

Step 1: Choose and Register a Domain Name


In order to build a website, the very first thing you’ll need to do is to choose a domain name for your website.

The domain name will be your website name and address. That address is used by visitors when they try to find your site through their web browsers.

This website’s domain name is staging-websitesetup.kinsta.cloud. Yours can be anything.

Domain names can cost anywhere from $10 to $20 a year. The usual price tag is around $15.

You can go ahead and use Domain.com (or any other domain registrar) for registering a domain name for your website:

If you haven’t registered or chosen a domain name for your website, here are three tips to help you out:

  1. If you’re making a website for a business, your domain name should match your company name. For example: YourCompanyName.com
  2. If you’re planning to set up a personal website for yourself then YourName.com can be a great option.
  3. Use a “generic” domain name extension such as .com, .net or .org, If your goal is international visitors. Use a “local” domain name extension such as .de, .fr or. ru if your goal is country-targeted visitors.

Don’t worry if your preferred domain name is already taken. There are more than 300 million different domain names registered, but there are a billion other possibilities that are still available.

What next? If you have already registered a domain name – great. However, you don’t need to register it right away. You can also secure a domain name through web hosting company in step 2.

Step 2: Sign Up for Web Hosting


In addition to having a domain name, you’ll also need website hosting (web hosting).

Web hosting is a service that hosts and stores your website files (content) on a secure server that is always up and running. Without a web host, your site will not be accessible for others to read and browse.

Affordable and reliable web hosting for new websites costs usually between $3 to $10 a month. Less than a cup of coffee, but an important investment for your website success.

In nutshell, web hosting will look something like this:

Here’s how web hosting looks like

In short, it’s a panel where you can set up your website, manage your email accounts, domains and so on.

Whichever web hosting company you sign up with, make sure it has the following features:

  • One-click-install for WordPress
  • Custom email accounts
  • Unlimited bandwidth (visitors)
  • Customer support, preferably 24/7 live chat

If you find a website hosting that offers all of the things above, you’ve likely found a good provider.

Don’t be scared. Web hosting might sound technical nightmare, but in reality it’s not. Most web hosting providers are very simple and easy to use.

I personally recommend using Bluehost.com for web hosting and domains.

To get easily started, you can get both – domain name and web hosting from Bluehost.

They offer free domain registration for the first year and getting a domain name and hosting from the same company saves you some time and money. Bluehost hosting plans start from $2.75/mo. Simply click on my discount link and secure yourself a domain name and web hosting (it gets activated instantly).

If you already have a domain name and web hosting, you can still build a website. Just make sure your current web hosting company supports WordPress – we are going to need this in the next step.

Step 3: Install WordPress

Teach how to set up and install WordPress on Bluehost (high quality images, less is more)

and/ or

Step 4: Choose Design (Theme) for Your Website

Teach how to choose a theme. Some info between free and paid themes. Some pointers on how to choose a theme.

Lastly, show them how you install WSUBusiness theme (which is free WP theme).

Step 5: Change Colors, Add Logo and Set Up Navigation Structure

Tell them how to tweak and customize wordpress themes.

Step 6: Add New Pages with Content

Tell them what important pages they need to add (about, service, contact etc) and how to add content through WordPress gutenberg.

and/or

 

Congratulations – Here’s a Site I Created. What Did YOU Build?

Show example website you built using this guide.

To quickly summarise the steps you’ve learned:

text here

Last But Not Least – Keep Improving Your Website

Congrats, you’ve just figured out how to create a website all on your own